Monday, October 21st, 2013

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Warm Face Palette
MAC Stroke of Midnight/Warm Face Palette

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Warm Face Palette ($49.50 for 0.295 oz.) is a warm-toned palette with products for eyes, lips, and face. It contains three eyeshadows (0.028 oz. each), two lipsticks (0.024 oz. each), one iridescent powder (0.176 oz.), and one eye pencil (0.015 oz.). The products represent a a total value of $44.09 –$16.80 worth of eyeshadows, $7.20 worth of lipsticks, $15.09 worth of iridescent powder, and $5 worth of eyeliner. Over time, as more and more brands churn out mega palettes for the holidays all around $50 or so, and I wish MAC would step-up the value (or reduce the cost) of their holiday sets and kits.  Golden and Showstopper were the major misses here, as neither performed well; while Myself wears away quickly and Coffee is uncomfortable to use.

Golden is described as a “muted golden tan-beige with shimmer.” It’s a softened, medium orange-brown with golden shimmer. The texture of this was strangely dry and almost crumbly/chunky. It flaked away and didn’t bind together well. The color payoff was so-so but it tended to sheer out/blend away as the product didn’t stick to the skin well. What did apply lasted six and a half hours. Too Faced Chocolate Soleil (P) is browner. Wet ‘n’ Wild Bikini Contest (P, $3.99) is similar. NARS Laguna (P, $36.00) is more golden.MAC Soft Sand (LE, $25.00) is darker, browner. See comparison swatches.

Myself is described as a “light dirty mauve with traveling pearl [with a Lustre finish].” It’s a pale, muted pink with neutral undertones and a golden sheen. On lips, it lightens the natural color and has semi-opaque color coverage. It wore for two hours. MAC Sublime Pleasure (LE, $15.00) is similar. MAC Flair for Finery (LE, $15.00) is also similar. MAC Feed the Senses (LE, $15.00) is darker. Revlon Pink Lemonade (P, $7.49) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Love Talk is described as a “mid-tone cool nude [with a Cremesheen finish].” It’s a plummy brown with neutral-cool undertones and a luminous sheen. It had mostly opaque color coverage and wore for four hours. It was a smidgen drying–but this is typical of Cremesheen finishes for me, though I know others do not have any issues with this finish! Bobbi Brown Soft Nude (P, $24.00) has more plum in it. MAC Viva Glam VI (P, $15.00) is more frosted, less brown. Guerlain Chant d’Aromes (P, $35.00) is more shimmery. Bobbi Brown Uber Suede (P, $24.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

Tenderly is described as a “soft warm pink with frost [with a frost finish].” Though it has pink tones, it translated to more like a neutral-cool pale beige with a warmer, golden sheen. It had so-so color payoff. NARS Mississippi Mermaid (LE, $24.00) is similar. Disney by Sephora Scuttle (LE) is warmer. MAC Dew (LE, $15.00) is similar. Dior Fairy Golds #1 (LE) is also similar. See comparison swatches.

After Dusk is described as a “mid-tone rosy pink with pearl [with a Veluxe Pearl finish].” It’s a rosy plum with a frosted, metallic sheen. It had good pigmentation, and the texture was soft and smooth. theBalm Just This Once Jamie (P, $16.00) is browner. MAC Performance Art (LE, $15.00) is lighter. MAC Universal Appeal (LE, $21.00) is less warm-toned. MAC Trax (P, $15.00) is purpler. MAC Star Violet (P, $15.00) is darker. Chanel Harmonie du Soir #3 (LE) is less metallic. See comparison swatches.

Showstopper is described as a “deep blackened brown [with a Matte finish].” It’s a cool-toned, deep dark brown with a matte finish. The only problem is it doesn’t look like much applied, because it had such poor color payoff and a really stiff, dry texture that made it difficult to apply and blend. Too Faced Dark Chocolate (LE) is warmer. Tom Ford Beauty She Wolf #1 (LE) is similar. bareMinerals Boardroom (LE) is similar. MAC Set to Dance (LE, $15.00) is darker. MAC Midnight Flurry (LE, $15.00) is cooler-toned. MAC Diamond Dove (LE, $15.00) is similar. Inglot #329 (P, $6.00) is warmer. See comparison swatches.

Coffee is described as an “intense bronze.” It’s a chocolate brown with warm undertones and a matte finish. It had good pigmentation, but the texture was a bit dry. It was uncomfortable to apply to the lash line, as it tended to skip and tug. The color wore well for almost eight hours with minimal fading. Bobbi Brown Chocolate (LE, $24.00) is similar. Urban Decay Demolition (P, $19.00) is cooler-toned. MAC Rich Experience (P, $20.00) is more neutral-toned. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

LE
palette

Stroke of Midnight/Warm

C

Golden and Showstopper were the major misses here, as neither performed well; while Myself wears away quickly and Coffee is uncomfortable to use. It was a disappointing palette overall.

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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LE
product

Golden

D-

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

7/10

Texture

5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
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Dupes
LE
product

Myself

C+

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Monday, October 21st, 2013

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Smoky Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Stroke of Midnight/Smoky Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Smoky Eyeshadow Palette ($39.50 for 0.14 oz.) features five shades in a mix of cool and warm tones to create a smoky eye. Worth noting, Retrospeck and Carbon are both part of the permanent range, so if you like either of those, you can find them individually as well. Chillproof and Gaelic Gold have been released previously as limited edition shades.  Carbon was quite impressive, given it’s horrid texture and payoff in palettes over the years, so that was a surprise.  Well Put Together was the big miss, though, as it was sheer, stiff, and dry–so a pain to work with and apply.  Retrospeck had some fall out during wear as well as during application, and the texture was a little chunky.  Gaelic Gold and Chillproof were pretty good and were the standouts of the palette.

Chillproof is described as a “frosty white [with a Frost finish].” It’s a brightened, neutral white–not too stark or cool-toned with a frosted, slightly metallic, finish. It had good color payoff, and the texture was soft and smooth. Dior Lune (001) (P, $30.00) is a cream product. Disney by Sephora Midnight Hour #1 (LE) is similar. Urban Decay Zephyr (LE, $18.00) is yellower. NARS Flowers 1 #1 (LE, $24.00) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Retrospeck is described as a “beached blonde [with a Lustre finish].” It’s a muted, orange-gold with a frosted finish and champagne and gold glitter. It has a chunkier consistency, so it feels a little dry and loose when used. MAC Until Dawn #2 (LE, $21.00) is smoother. Sleek MakeUP Meet in Madrid (LE, $9.99) is similar. L’Oreal Eternal Sunshine (P, $7.99) is yellower. Chanel Harmonie du Soir #1 (LE) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Gaelic Gold is described as a “metallic gold [with a Veluxe Pearl finish].” It’s a deeper, more molten yellow gold with a frosted, partially metallic finish. It had fairly good color payoff, and the texture was soft and applied smoothly for the most part. Too Faced Twinkle (LE) is darker. NARS Iskandar (P, $25.00) is a cream product. Too Faced Instigator (LE) is similar. Sephora Collection Girls Night Out (03) (P, $13.00) is similar. NARS Paramaribo #1 is cooler-toned. MAC Goldmine (P, $15.00) is lighter, yellower. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Triptych (P, $14.00) is brighter. Inglot #430 (P, $6.00) is yellower. See comparison swatches.

Well Put Together is described as a “black with gold frost [with a Velvet finish].” It appears as a blackened brown with a faint dusting of copper and gold micro-shimmer in the pan, but it swatches lighter–it’s like a dark brown with subtle warm undertones and a satin finish. The texture was dry and stiff, so the resulting color payoff was weak. MAC Carbonized (LE, $15.00) is lighter, warmer. Bobbi Brown Cocoa Berry (LE, $21.00) is warmer. See comparison swatches.

Carbon is described as an “intense black [with a Matte finish].” It’s a medium-dark black with neutral to warm undertones and a matte finish. This is likely the best version of Carbon I’ve seen in years; it actually swatches and applies surprisingly nicely and with good color payoff. You can see how it stacks up to a myriad of matte blacks in these swatch comparisons.

The Glossover

LE
palette

Stroke of Midnight/Smoky

B
Carbon was quite impressive, given it's horrid texture and payoff in palettes over the years, so that was a surprise. Well Put Together was the big miss, though, as it was sheer, stiff, and dry--so a pain to work with and apply. Retrospeck had some fall out during wear as well as during application, and the texture was a little chunky. Gaelic Gold and Chillproof were pretty good and were the standouts of the palette.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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LE
product

Chillproof

A

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
P
product

Retrospeck

C+

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Sunday, October 20th, 2013

MAC Stroke of Midnight Face Palette/Cool
MAC Stroke of Midnight Face Palette/Cool

MAC Stroke of Midnight Face Palette/Cool ($49.50 for 0.295 oz.) is a cool-toned palettes with products for eyes, lips, and face. It contains three eyeshadows (0.028 oz. each), two lipsticks (0.024 oz. each), one iridescent powder (0.176 oz.), and one eye pencil (0.015 oz.). The products represent a a total value of $44.09 –$16.80 worth of eyeshadows, $7.20 worth of lipsticks, $15.09 worth of iridescent powder, and $5 worth of eyeliner. Over time, as more and more brands churn out mega palettes for the holidays all around $50 or so, and I wish MAC would step-up the value (or reduce the cost) of their holiday sets and kits. The biggest misses in this palette were Scene and Ebony, and they were both really pitiful products. There are several nice products here–Romantically Inclined, All Races, Magic Moor–but they don’t make up for the two bombs.

Sparkling Rose is described as a “soft pink with gold frost.” It’s a soft, golden beige with a light, frosted finish that looked rather metallic on. It had decent pigmentation, and the texture was soft and fairly smooth. It wore well for seven hours, but it looked noticeably patchy after eight hours of wear. It did lightly emphasize pores as it looked quite metallic applied. Urban Decay Glint (LE) is warmer. bareMinerals The Love Affair (LE, $26.00) is darker. Bobbi Brown Rose Gold (LE, $42.00) is pinker. See comparison swatches.

Sublime Pleasure is described as a “soft mauve cream [with a Lustre finish].” It’s a soft, cool-toned, medium pink with a luminous sheen. It had semi-sheer pigmentation, and it applied smoothly overall. It lasted two and a half hours and was a little drying on me. MAC Flair for Finery (LE, $15.00) is lighter, less pink. theBalm Milly (P) is warmer. MAC Dreaminess (P, $22.00) is pinker. Chanel Candeur (P, $34.00) is similar. Bobbi Brown Orchid Pink (LE, $23.00) is cooler-toned. See comparison swatches.

Romantically Inclined is described as a “cool plum cream [with a Cremesheen finish].” It’s a magenta purple with cool undertones and a soft sheen. It had semi-opaque color coverage, and it applied evenly and smoothly. It wore for five hours and was neither drying nor hydrating. MAC Feel My Pulse (LE, $15.00) is similar. Maybelline Brazen Berry (P, $7.49) is lighter. MAC Seductive Intent (LE, $16.00) is more magenta/purple. MAC Violetta (P, $15.00) is more iridescent. MAC Strong Woman (LE, $15.00) is purpler, darker. MAC Heroine (LE, $15.00) is slightly purpler. MAC Bust Out (LE, $15.00) is similar. See comparison swatches.

All Races is described as a “cool light mauve taupe [with a Matte finish].” It’s a pale, gray-ish lavender with cool undertones and a matte finish. The texture was soft and finely-milled with great color payoff. It lasted well for eight hours on the lid. NARS Namibia (P, $24.00) is grayer. Disney by Sephora What’s-It (LE) is similar. MAC Creative Whim (LE, $15.00) is shimmery. MAC Fresh Ice (LE, $21.00) is lighter. MAC Silver Gull (LE, $15.00) is grayer. MAC Silverwear (LE, $15.00) is frosted. MAC Look at the Eyes (LE, $15.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

Scene is described as a “muted blue-grey [with a Satin finish].” It’s a dirty gray with neutral undertones and a satin finish. The texture was dry and stiff, so the color payoff reflected that–it was very sheer. It had noticeably faded after six and a half hours of wear. Guerlain Crazy Paris #5 (LE)is darker. NARS Delphes #2 (LE, $24.00) is similar. MAC Interior Life (LE, $15.00) is darker, grayer. MAC All Woman (LE, $15.00) is warmer. See comparison swatches.

Magic Moor is described as a “rich blackened plum with pearl [with a Veluxe Pearl].” It’s a deep, dark purple burgundy with a pearly sheen. The color payoff was fantastic, and the texture was soft and smooth. LORAC Deep Purple (P) is similar. Fyrinnae Alchemist’s Curse (P, $6.80) is brighter. Urban Decay Rapture (LE, $18.00) is purpler. Urban Decay Rockstar (P, $18.00) is purpler. Estee Lauder Cyber Lilac (LE, $24.00) is also purpler. See comparison swatches.

Ebony is described as an “intense black.” It’s a sheer, stiff black eyeliner. The consistency of it was really dry–it just wasn’t creamy at all, so it skipped and dragged on the skin. I highly recommend dulling the initial point, as it is extremely sharp, which doesn’t help the color payoff but does make it less painful to use. It lasted for almost eight hours with light shrinkage. There is no shortage in black eyeliners, so you can see comparison swatches of many blacks that out-perform this one.

The Glossover

LE
palette

Stroke of Midnight/Cool

C+

The biggest misses in this palette were Scene and Ebony, and they were both really pitiful products. There are several nice products here--Romantically Inclined, All Races, Magic Moor--but they don't make up for the two bombs.

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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LE
product

Sparkling Rose

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
LE
product

Sublime Pleasure

B-

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Saturday, October 19th, 2013

MAC Divine Night Mineralize Eyeshadow Duos
MAC Divine Night Mineralize Eyeshadow Duos

MAC Divine Night Mineralize Eyeshadow Duos ($23.00 for 0.06 oz.) are available in six new and limited edition versions. Each version contains two shades. The areas are large enough to fit normal eyeshadow brushes in, so they can be used individually.  The majority of the shades wore about seven hours with some fading present at that point, while a few had fall out alongside the shorter wear time.  I think on the whole, these eyeshadows seemed more pigmented than other Mineralize Eyeshadows, and some of them had a softer, denser texture–but a few were a little drier and stiffer to work with.

Captivating #1 is described as a “deep gold.” It’s a light-medium, yellow gold with a frosted, metallic finish. It had good color payoff when applied dry or damp–when applied damp, it was smoother and less powdery. It showed some signs of fading after six hours of wear. theBalm D1 (LE, $16.00) is more metallic. Chanel Convoitise (90) (LE, $36.00) is lighter. Sephora Collection French Riviera (04) (P, $13.00) is darker. theBalm Snobby (P, $16.00) is lighter. MAC Dreammaker (LE, $15.00) is less frosted. MAC Sweet & Sour #1 (P, $21.00) is similar. L’Oreal Gold Imperial (LE, $7.99) is more metallic. L’Oreal Eternal Sunshine (P, $7.99) is also more metallic. Lancome Eternal Gold (P, $24.50) is more metallic, warmer. See comparison swatches.

Captivating #2 is described as a “bright white gold base.” It’s a stark, white gold base–there’s the stark white base with a pale gold shimmer-sheen that seems to get pulled out if you blend out the shade. The texture was a little chunky and loose. Applied dry, it was powdery, chunky, and dusty, and then applied damp, it was less powdery and dusty, but it didn’t smooth out. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. MAC Greenluxe #2 (P) is more metallic, darker. Disney by Sephora Charming (LE) is darker. Urban Decay Vanilla (LE, $18.00) is similar. MAC Short Shorts (LE, $15.00) is smoother. bareMinerals Breathtaking (P) is less warm-toned. See comparison swatches.

Exquisite Ego #1 is described as a “soft white champagne.” It’s a light, peachy-beige with a frosted, metallic sheen. It had decent color payoff applied dry but was more pigmented when applied damp. The texture was slightly powdery. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. Kat Von D Precious (LE) is less metallic. MAC Vanilla Diamond (LE, $21.00) is lighter. Marc Jacobs Beauty The Starlet #2 (P) is similar. Disney by Sephora Scuttle (LE) is less shimmery. Urban Decay Flow (LE, $18.00) is similar. MAC Summer Haze (LE, $21.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

Exquisite Ego #2 is described as a “bronze base.” It’s a coppery orange with warm undertones and a frosted, metallic finish. It had good color payoff both wet and dry; it was slightly powdery when applied dry but was nice when applied damp. There’s no shortage of dupes for a shade like this. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. LORAC Gold (P) is similar. Marc Jacobs Beauty The Starlet #4 (P) is more orange. Bobbi Brown Tiger’s Eye (LE, $21.00) is browner. NARS Isolde #1 (P, $24.00) is similar. MAC Campfire (LE, $32.50) is richer. bareMinerals Bragging Rights (LE) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Gilded Night #1 is described as a “black with pearl.” It’s a soft black with silver shimmer. Applied dry, it’s sheer and dry; applied damp, it is somewhat more pigmented but still significantly softer and more muted than it appears in the pan. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. Too Faced Starry Night (LE) is darker. Sephora Collection Animal Instinct (01) (P, $13.00) is similar. MAC Dark Dare (LE, $21.00) is less sparkly, darker. Burberry Dark Spice #1 (P) is darker. See comparison swatches.

Gilded Night #2 is described as a “bright gold with silver pearl base.” It’s a bright, light-medium yellow gold with a frosted, sparkling finish. It had a chunky consistency in the pan, so it was difficult to apply it smoothly, even when applied with a dampened brush. It had good color payoff, though. It showed some signs of fading and fall out after seven hours of wear. Kat Von D Sunset Blvd. is lighter. (LE) CoverGirl Melted Gold (320) (P, $4.99) is lighter. Disney by Sephora Triton (LE) is similar. Chanel Cool Gold (LE, $34.00) is a cream product. Maybelline Gold Rush (P, $6.99) is a cream product. MAC Goldmine (P, $15.00) is yellower. bareMinerals Surreal (P) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Past Midnight #1 is described as a “soft white pink frost.” It’s a pale, subtly cool-toned, light pink with a metallic finish. It is sheer when applied dry, and it was more opaque when applied damp. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. Kat Von D Instaglam (LE) is similar. MAC Dare to Bare (LE, $21.00) is less metallic. MAC Good Fortune (LE, $16.50) is a cream product. Giorgio Armani #29 (LE, $33.00) is darker. bareMinerals Glitterati (LE) is warmer. See comparison swatches.

Past Midnight #2 is described as a “blackish purple with violet pearl base.” It’s a violet purple over a blackened base with a satiny sheen. It had very sheer pigmentation when applied dry, and when applied damp, it was semi-opaque but still not great. The texture was very dry and a little stiff to work with. It showed some signs of fading after six hours of wear. Sleek MakeUP Bliss in Barcelona (LE, $9.99) is brighter. Marc Jacobs Beauty The Tease #1 (P) is similar. theBalm All the Way Annie (P, $16.00) is also similar. theBalm Lavish Latoya (LE, $16.00) is lighter. Urban Decay Rockstar (P, $18.00) is darker. NARS High Society #3 (LE, $24.00) is more matte. L’Oreal Perpetual Purple (P, $7.99) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Tonight’s Temptation #1 is described as a “royal blue.” It’s a medium-dark blue with a soft, frosted sheen. It had so-so color payoff applied dry, but it was much more pigmented when applied damp. The texture was soft, not too powdery. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. Sephora Collection My Boyfriend’s Jeans (19) (P, $13.00) is purpler. Urban Decay Radium (P, $18.00) is lighter. MAC Love Cycle #2 (LE, $21.00) is richer. MAC Blue Sheen (LE, $21.00) is darker. MAC Deep Truth (P, $15.00) is less cool-toned. MAC Switch to Blue (LE, $18.50) is lighter, cream product. See comparison swatches.

Tonight’s Temptation #2 is described as a “black with pearl base.” It’s a dark black with a soft silver shimmer. It is more intense than the Gilded Night #1. It was sheer when applied dry, and then it was semi-opaque when applied damp. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. Too Faced Starry Night (LE) is similar. Marc Jacobs Beauty The Mod #2 (P) is similar. CoverGirl Molten Black (300) (P, $4.99) is also similar. Bobbi Brown Lava (LE) is darker. NARS Night Breed (LE, $24.00) is darker. MAC Blacklit (LE, $18.50) is a cream product. Chanel Mirifique (P, $36.00) is more sparkly, cream product. See comparison swatches.

Until Dawn #1 is described as a “purple taupe.” It’s a subtly gray-tinged, caramel brown with a frosted, slightly metallic, sheen. It had sheer color payoff when applied dry, but it was a lot more pigmented applied damp. This shade was somewhat powdery. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear. Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss #3 (P, $30.00) is darker, cooler-toned. Edward Bess Dusk (P, $30.00) is darker. Urban Decay Stray Dog (LE, $18.00) is similar, slightly darker. Bobbi Brown Heather Brown (LE, $29.00) is lighter. See comparison swatches.

Until Dawn #2 is described as a “soft gold base.” It’s a muted, yellow gold with warm undertones and a frosted, slightly metallic, sheen. It had a slightly powdery, somewhat chunky, consistency. It had sheer pigmentation when applied dry, and it was more opaque when applied damp. It showed some signs of fading after seven hours of wear.  Sleek MakeUP Meet in Madrid (LE, $9.99) is similar. theBalm Iron Maid-in (P, $16.00) is yellower. Milani Drenched in Gold (P, $6.99) is a bit yellower. Dior Night Golds #4 (LE) is very similar. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

LE
palette

Captivating

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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LE
product

Captivating #1

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
LE
product

Captivating #2

B-

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Saturday, October 19th, 2013

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Warm Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Stroke of Midnight/Warm Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Warm Eyeshadow Palette ($39.50 for 0.14 oz.) features five shades with warm undertones. Amber Lights and Mulch are both part of the permanent range, while the other three are all repromotes.  Femme-fi is a repromote of a limited edition shade, while the other two are new (I do believe!).  Midnight Hour was the only miss in the palette, and it was a soft miss; because it is a darker color, with a soft, fluffy brush, it can still be usable–it’s just not ideal because it lacks a softer texture that would deliver better color payoff and blendability.  Femme-Fi and Amber Lights were a smidgen powdery at times, but they were quite pigmented and easy to blend.  Mulch could have been softer, denser, but it had fairly good color payoff and was fairly easy to blend.  All of the shades except Midnight Hour wore well for eight hours without fading or creasing; Midnight Hour was slightly faded after eight hours of wear.  This is a nice palette overall, especially given past years’ palettes from MAC at holiday, but the competition on palettes during the holiday is stiff–$40 for 5 shades isn’t the best deal around, so since it’s not a total home run, I’m not sold.

Femme-Fi is described as a “frosty golden cream [with a Veluxe Pearl].” It’s a soft, golden beige with a frosted finish. It had a soft, buttery texture and really nice color payoff. Kat Von D Galore (LE) is similar. Disney by Sephora Sea Shells (LE) is lighter. Estee Lauder Halo (P, $24.00) is a cream product. See comparison swatches.

Amber Lights is described as a “peachy brown with shimmer [with a Frost finish].” It’s a warm-toned, medium copper with strong orange undertones and a frosted, metallic finish. It had really intense pigmentation, and the texture was soft and smooth. There are quite a few near-identical dupes for this–see comparison swatches.

Mulch is described as a “red-brown with bronze pearl [with a Velvet finish].” It’s a medium-dark, reddish-toned brown with a golden sheen and warm undertones. It had a pearly finish. The consistency was soft, and it applied smoothly, but it did seem a little lighter/weaker compared to the permanent shade. Too Faced Chestnut (LE) is less red-toned. MAC Eclair (LE, $18.50) is a cream product. MAC Lie Low (P, $21.00) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Socialite is described as a “warm copper [with a Satin finish].” It’s a warm-toned, mustard-y color. This one is a color that I found hard to describe, as it’s a mix of brown, orange, and yellow with a barely-there satin finish. It had excellent color payoff and applied very smoothly. MAC Juiced was the only similar shade that came to mind, but it is yellower. See comparison swatches.

Midnight Hour is described as a “warm blackened plum [with a Velvet finish].” It’s a dark brown with neutral-to-warm undertones and a barely-there satin finish. The texture was a bit dry to work with, but a soft, fluffy brush (like a good crease brush) helped out during application quite a bit. Tom Ford Beauty She Wolf #1 is cooler-toned. (LE) MAC Diamond Dove (LE, $15.00) is similar, more matte.Benefit Quick, Look Busy (P, $20.00) is a touch lighter. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

LE
palette

Stroke of Midnight/Warm

B+

This is a nice palette overall, especially given past years' palettes from MAC at holiday, but the competition on palettes during the holiday is stiff--$40 for 5 shades isn't the best deal around, so since it's not a total home run, I'm not sold. Midnight Hour was the only miss in the palette, and it was a soft miss; because it is a darker color, with a soft, fluffy brush, it can still be usable--it's just not ideal because it lacks a softer texture that would deliver better color payoff and blendability. Femme-Fi and Amber Lights were a smidgen powdery at times, but they were quite pigmented and easy to blend. Mulch could have been softer, denser, but it had fairly good color payoff and was fairly easy to blend.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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LE
product

Femme-Fi

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
P
product

Amber Lights

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Saturday, October 19th, 2013

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Cool Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Stroke of Midnight/Cool Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Stroke of Midnight/Cool Eyeshadow Palette ($39.50 for 0.14 oz.) features five shades of cool-toned eyeshadows for the holidays.  This year’s eyeshadow palettes are a definite surprise–and in a good way–because they’re better than the last few years’ palettes in terms of quality. I don’t think they’re the best palette for the holidays now that they’re at nearly $40 a pop (and you’re only getting 0.14 oz.).  Deception had a chunky, glittery texture that felt dry and a little loose, while Romance Me was somewhat stiffer to work with, but the other three eyeshadows were nice overall.  Shadowy Lady felt softer and had more payoff (more readily) than I remember the permanent version having.  Deception had fall out during wear, and Frisco was prone to a little fading after seven and a half hours, while the majority of the shades looked mostly intact by the eight-hour mark.

Fair Sex is described as a “light frosted pink [with a Frost finish].” It’s a light pink with subtle cool undertones and a frosted finish. It had decent to good pigmentation and applied smoothly overall. Too Faced Taffy (LE) is similar. Urban Decay Minor Sin (LE, $18.00) is warmer. Marc Jacobs Beauty The Tease #5 (P) is more metallic. Dior Constellation (864) #3 (LE) is cooler-toned. MAC Dare to Bare (LE, $21.00) is warmer. MAC Invincible Light (LE, $21.00) is similar. Chanel Harmonie du Soir #4 (LE) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Deception is described as a “frosty golden brown [with a Frost finish].” It’s a subtly warm-toned, medium-dark brown with gold sparkle. The texture felt more like a Lustre, as it had a chunky, gritty feel because of the high sparkle content. LORAC Pewter (P) is less sparkly, darker. MAC Damson (LE, $21.00) is more golden. Disney by Sephora Chateau (LE) is smoother. MAC Roasted Chestnut (LE, $32.50) is warmer, darker. Chanel Ebloui (P, $36.00) is a cream product, darker. See comparison swatches.

Romance Me is described as a “warm plum with gold pearl [with a Lustre finish].” It’s a cool-toned, gray-tinged brown with a pearly sheen. It had so-so color payoff, as the texture was somewhat stiff and harder to blend. Disney by Sephora Jaq (LE) is browner. MAC Twilight Falls (LE, $21.00) is similar. MAC Shale (P, $15.00) is less gray/purple. See comparison swatches.

Frisco is described as a “soft pastel pink [with a Matte finish].”  It’s a light-medium, pink-peach with a matte finish.  It had fairly good color payoff, and the texture was soft, velvety, and not powdery. Too Faced Spike the Punch (LE) is shimmery. Too Faced Ringleader (LE) is frosted. MAC Orb (P, $15.00) is lighter. Inglot #341 (P, $6.00) is warmer, less pink. See comparison swatches.

Shadowy Lady is described as a “blackened plum [with a Matte finish].” It’s a deep, purpled burgundy with a matte finish. It had a soft, slightly powdery–but very smooth–texture with good color payoff. It actually seemed softer and easier to use than the permanent version. Disney by Sephora Wonder by Wonder (LE) is more muted. bareMinerals Nightcap (P) is lighter. MAC Fig. 1 (P, $15.00) is lighter. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

LE
palette

Stroke of Midnight/Cool

B+

This year's eyeshadow palettes are a definite surprise--and in a good way--because they're better than the last few years' palettes in terms of quality. I don't think they're the best palette for the holidays now that they're at nearly $40 a pop (and you're only getting 0.14 oz.). Deception had a chunky, glittery texture that felt dry and a little loose, while Romance Me was somewhat stiffer to work with, but the other three eyeshadows were nice overall.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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LE
product

Fair Sex

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
P
product

Deception

C

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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